Tõnu Seilenthal, a member of the Consultative Committee of Finno-Ugric Peoples, the coordinating body of the World Congress of Finno-Ugric Peoples, due to take place this summer in Tartu, Estonia, says in an interview with Estonian World that even if the Russian Federation creates an “iron curtain”, the results of the cooperation so far will still support the vitality and continuity of the Finno-Ugric peoples of Russia; Seilenthal does not yet rule out that representatives of the Russia’s Finno-Ugric community – and even president Vladimir Putin – will still attend the congress.
The Association of the Finno-Ugric Peoples of the Russian Federation announced on 23 April that their representatives will not participate in the next World Congress of Finno-Ugric Peoples, due to take place this June in Estonia. The association called into the question the need for congresses in the future and blamed them for “interfering in the internal affairs of the Russian Federation and its peoples”. The statement especially blamed Estonia and Finland – and their respective delegations.
Oliver Loode, an Estonian human rights advocate of the indigenous Uralic peoples, told Estonian World that the statement is “probably Kremlin’s work”, with instructions possibly coming straight from the president’s administration.
Tõnu Seilenthal, a member of the Consultative Committee of Finno-Ugric Peoples, the coordinating body of the congress as well as a member of the congress’ management committee, says in an interview with Estonian World that it’s not yet clear who’s behind the statement – and neither is absolutely clear whether Russian representatives will attend the congress, due to take place from 16-18 June 2021 at the Estonian National Museum in Tartu.
Source: Estonian World